Kenya remains a world-leading safari destination in 2021, according to the World Travel Awards.
This marks the seventh time in a row that the country has been recognised as the premier wildlife tourism stop at the prestigious annual global awards.
Kenya beat Botswana, South Africa, Tanzania, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The announcement was made on Thursday during the WTA grand final winners’ day, held to celebrate excellence in travel and tourism.
National carrier Kenya Airways was recognised as Africa’s leading airline, with its business class also emerging top in the continent. Ethiopia Airlines scooped both the leading brand and economy class awards in Africa in 2021.
Kenya Tourism Board CEO Betty Radier termed the win a testament to the country’s superior offering of the safari product and experience.
“This recognition is an endorsement of Magical Kenya, known as the home of authentic African Safari. Without a doubt, this is well-deserved, and I believe that we shall get even better. We shall continue with our commitment towards preserving and showcasing to the world the unique wildlife heritage bestowed to our country for the sake of generations to come,” she said.
Dr Radier added that the country would continue to build on its potential growth areas, including “the Magical Kenya Signature Experiences, where travellers have an opportunity to experience a foot safari or even track wildlife while on foot.”
During the Covid-19 pandemic, when travel restrictions hit the sector, the Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife launched a virtual live stream campaign to showcase game safaris in parks and reserves across the country.
The campaign was broadcast worldwide as part of the Magic Awaits destination marketing campaign in 2020.
In August this year, Kenya partnered with video sharing platform TikTok to showcase the great wildebeest migration at the Maasai Mara game reserve.
“Kenya is a rich and diverse country, with an incredible wildlife offering which we want to highlight as well as protect… Kenya Tourism Board is keen to ensure MagicalKenya remains top of mind among consumers,” said Dr Radier.
Other category winners were as follows.
Africa’s Leading Airport Hotel 2021 — Four Points by Sheraton Nairobi
Africa’s Leading All-Inclusive Resort 2021 — Diamonds Dream of Africa
Africa’s Leading Business Travel Destination 2021 — Nairobi
Africa’s Leading City Hotel 2021 — Fairmont The Norfolk
Africa’s Leading Cruise Port 2021 — Port of Mombasa
Africa’s Leading Hotel 2021 — Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club
Africa’s Leading Hotel Brand 2021 — Serena Hotels
Africa’s Leading Luxury Tented Safari Camp 2021 — Olare Mara Kempinski Masai Mara
Africa’s Leading Meetings & Conference Centre 2021 — Kenyatta International Convention Centre
Africa’s Leading Sports Resort 2021 — Ocean Sports Resort, Watamu
Africa’s Leading Tented Safari Camp 2021 — Finch Hattons
Africa’s Leading Tour Operator 2021 — Pollman’s Tours & Safaris
Africa’s Leading Tourist Board 2021 — Kenya Tourism Board